Early in Stick’s hike he had struck up a friendship with a hiker named Dapper Dan, who lives in this part of Pennsylvania. Dapper Dan was now well ahead of us on the trail, but he told Stick that when Stick reached this area Dan would arrange for some trail magic his fiancée, Bekka.
While I set up my tent in the tenting area across the road from the shelter and caretaker’s house, Stick called Bekka to let her know we had arrived at the shelter.
It was now just after 5 p.m. Bekka said she was on her way.
After waiting more than an hour, Stick texted Bekka to check on her and found out her dog was sick, but as soon as she got the dog to the vet she would come to pick us up.
In the meantime, Dory, Splat, and two other hikers called a cab and went into Hamburg. This annoyed the caretaker, which made him grumpier than before.
One of the things that apparently sets him off is when hikers bring back pizza and groceries, then leave the boxes and packaging there. He complained to Stick and me that he has to pay for the garbage collection, and doesn’t want to handle trash left by hikers.
We made note of this as we waited for Bekka.
And we waited.
We began to worry she would never show up. This was a problem because we had no food left. We had to resupply tonight, or we would have to call an expensive cab in the morning.
Bekka finally showed up at 9:30 p.m., just as it was getting dark.
For the rest of the evening, I witnessed something I had never seen since I first met Stick. He was unable to utter more than a few words at a time.
The reason for his silence was because Bekka talked non-stop. Stick didn't stand a chance.
In between learning all about Bekka’s job and her relationship with Dapper Dan and her new car and her dog, we shopped at Walmart and ate a quick, very late dinner at McDonalds.
We arrived back at the shelter at close to midnight.
Hiker midnight is usually 9 p.m. or when it gets dark. That’s not the midnight I’m talking about. We got back at the real midnight, 12:00 a.m.
I don’t wish to seem ungrateful. It was very kind of Bekka help us out, especially when she was worried about her dog. Still, I didn’t count on this being such a difficult, exhausting, and long day.